“The Government Will Conduct An Inquiry”

July 6, 2020

[Updated] “The Government will conduct an inquiry and if it is confirmed that rules were violated without reasonable excuse, sanctions will be issued,” the Government said following the circulation of videos showing a social event at a local establishment.

Videos of the event, a fundraiser for a charity, circulated on social media and appear to show a number of people, who are not wearing masks, dancing to music. A number of people have commented on the videos on social media, noting that two Cabinet Ministers, Minister of National Security Wayne Caines and Minister of Tourism and Transport Zane DeSilva, appear to be among those seen in at least one video.

A Government spokesperson said, “M.E.F. Enterprises Limited was granted a large group exemption for the Meals on Wheels charity fundraising dinner, under the Public Health [COVID-19 Emergency Powers] Regulations 2020, by the Minister of National Security.

“The exemption was granted under regulation 5 [4], permitting a group of more than fifty persons to assemble on Friday, July 3rd 2020 from 6:00pm to 11:00pm at the Blu Bar and Grill Restaurant and as required, a notice was placed in the Official Gazette prior to the event.

“The notice required persons to wear masks and to adhere to guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health. From the videos shared, it can be seen that those rules were not being adhered to at all times during the event.

“The Government will conduct an inquiry and if it is confirmed that rules were violated without reasonable excuse, sanctions will be issued under Section 7[2] of the Public Health [COVID-19 Emergency Powers] Regulations 2020, which permit the Minister of Health to close an establishment that does not comply with health directions.”

We have reached out to various people seeking additional comment and will update if able.

Update: A Meals on Wheels spokesperson told Bernews, “Meals on Wheels is fortunate to receive many donations from the community and we are grateful for them. Often the fundraising activity goes on without our knowledge and without our being involved. That was the case here.”

Update: The OBA has commented on this, which can be read here.

Update: Blu restaurant has commented, which can be read here.

Update 11.01pm: Premier David Burt advised that Zane DeSilva and Wayne Caines “have accepted his invitation to resign from the Cabinet.” Read the full statement here.

Screenshot of the official notice:


covid-19 divider 1

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Comments (27)

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  1. Yeah right! says:

    So close BLU because of Zane and his cronies and Caine’s not following the Law? Sorry but that’s not acceptable and we will march against government if that happens! It’s Zane’s daughter who organized the event that should be fined / shutdown!

  2. Barbara D Cooper says:

    “The Government will conduct an inquiry and if it is confirmed that rules were violated without reasonable excuse, sanctions will be issued under Section 7[2] of the Public Health [COVID-19 Emergency Powers] Regulations 2020, which permit the Minister of Health to close an establishment that does not comply with health directions.”

    AND WHAT PUNISHMENT WILL BE DELIVERED TO National Security Minister Wayne Caines and Minister of Tourism and Transport Zane DeSilva ??????? They are the ones who BROKE THE RULES – not the establishment. This incident is NOT a good example set by these 2 members of our PLP Government. Where is their integrity and consideration for others ?

    • HELLO OBAERS says:

      Where they at the event for the entire duration?

      Did you see them break any rules or others at the party?

      Are you following rumours or factual information?

      Was the Ministers eating, I do not see how one can eat or drink with a MASK on?

      Lets get the facts right.

      • lion says:

        Did you not watch the video. the people were clearly all dancing and singing grouped together while the Minister was 3 ft away from the guy blowing the sax. How do they now expect us to follow the Health Ministers guidelines if they are not following them. yes they need to resign.

    • HELLO says:

      1. Did you personally witness the event?

      2. Where the Ministers at the Event during its entire duration?

      3. Did the Ministers eat/Drink with their MASK on?

      4. Where person that were dancing with one another related or strangers?

      5. Did Persons sitting at the tables eat with a MASK? Or did they try to eat with a MASK ON?

      • Toodle-oo says:

        As usual you’re grasping at straws yettb

    • Jack Archer says:

      they HAVE to resign. I they don’t the premier must fire them. If he does not it means he sees nothing wrong!

  3. Unbelievable says:

    This event was put on by Zane’s daughter. It’ll get swept under the rug in no time. Or the excuse will be that we can’t have a disruption in tourism leadership “during these challenging times”.

  4. Maiale says:

    I hope this will not impact the jobs of all those Bermudians employed at this establishment, at least two by my count.

  5. Wwatcher says:

    As per usual one rule for them one rule for everyone else, Wayne Caines is a constant embarrassment with his childish behavior. And please stop with the charity angle it was a launch Party for Zanes daughters entertainment company and we all know it. Men of honor would fall on their swords, but they won’t so will our fearless leader have the testicular fortitude to hold them both accountable for their actions?

  6. Vida Smith says:

    The restaurant should have had mask for their staff as well,but nobody cares,all they see is dollar bills.

    • Izzypop says:

      Exactly. Because all the other restaurants, in order to be open have to have all their staff wearing masks
      So right there by the video Blu broke the rules and should be penalized
      Charity or no charity
      What’s good for the goose is good for the gander

  7. Nigel spider says:

    Caines… You in trouble again!!! Geeze bie!

  8. Jack Archer says:

    Govt will conduct an inquiry into Blu? The deflection starts. SMH.
    Caines disobeyed the rules he put in place! He was there! will there be an inquiry as to why the Minister for national security did not advise everyone to adhere to the rules he signed off?

  9. AAron says:

    WOW!!! I could not believe what the degree of negligence I saw from the short video I just saw. How can the government be implementing some of the most strict Covid preventions measures for Bermudians and now visitors alike and having this kind of event.

    This is by far one of the greatest insults I’ve seen for all Bermudians who have suffered financially by locking people in their homes, placing curfews and other policies that has turned the Island almost into a police state.

    Here I am telling my friends overseas how responsive and serious the government of Bermuda has been taking this pandemic and now I see this. Not only am I ashamed, but furious.

    Thank God the PLP is the government in power during this pandemic, because I’m almost certain if this was the OBA implementing so many police state policies and now having this “benefit”careless, many Bermudians would be in front of the Parliament building.

    Because in the end we know there is a double standard. This applies both ways to both political parties. I’m sorry, but this is just unforgivable. All those people should be fined the so called $15,000 they want to find others for not doing what the government demands us to do. They all should be wearing the bracelets that Premier Burt was showing the community yesterday.

    Shame on those people, shame on the ministers and shame on everyone associated with this event.

  10. Astounded says:

    This is not the first time that Caines has made an absolute fool of himself. Yes the establishment violated all regulations, but the minister who signed the special permission and who actually attended, should have intervened. As for DeSilva, well nothing changes there. The fact that these two are making decisions for this island is scandalous and they both need to step down.

  11. Vida Smith says:

    They will never close one of the MEF restaurants down,they have too much power .

  12. Unbelievable says:

    It’s also incumbent on the party organisers to promote mask wearing and social distancing. Especially if the organiser is related to Minister DeSilva. EVERYONE knows this.

  13. DeOnion says:

    So MoW did not know. Things that make you go hmmmm

  14. Um Um Like says:

    No point in crying over spilled milk.

  15. We have the power says:

    WE have the power! Boycott ALL MEF restaurants! Send a clear message that they cannot flagrantly break the law!

  16. Hypocrisy says:

    This was a party by Minister Desilva’s daughter new entertainment business.

    The Meals On Wheels charity part was there to provide justification for Minister Caines to allow it to go ahead.

  17. lion says:

    Most of us have been trying to do the right thing during this pandemic. It took a lot of sacrifice.To see these Misnisters flout their own guidelines is reprehensive and there is no excuse they can give me to justify that behavior.

  18. Ringmaster says:

    Now that MEF has agreed to be the fall guy to protect the 2 Ministers, boycott all MEF restaurants. Sorry staff, but people power needs to be shown.

    • Steve says:

      Why boycott MEF when it is the two govenment ministers who should pay the price for ignoring the rules that they were supposed to enforce.

  19. Boston Whaler Owner says:

    Boycott the plp

  20. Anna says:

    Thank you,Thank you Premier Burt for being strong for all Bermudians. BLU should also be closed according to the rules. The story is out that the party was organized by Zane Desilva’s daughter’s company. Is she to not responsible? Government has done a great job and THANK YOU to you all….the rest of the people should be ashamed of themselves do they think they are above us all who have been so careful to follow the rules?